Turkish parliament gives Erdogan authority to extend layoff ban for a year

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkey’s parliament on Thursday approved a law allowing President Tayyip Erdogan to extend a layoff ban imposed to combat the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic until July 2021.

The layoff ban was first imposed in April for three months. With the new law, Erdogan will be allowed to extend the ban by three months each time until June 30, 2021.

Turkey’s headline unemployment rate fell to 12.8% in the March-May period from 13.2% a month earlier. But analysts have said the data does not show the economic blow dealt by COVID-19.[nL8N2EH1AO]

According to another section of the law, Erdogan will have the authority to decide for each sector whether to extend the short labour pay benefit, a system that provides additional wages to employees whose hours are cut short.

The law also allows the payment of social security premiums from the unemployment fund for three months to private sector companies that return to normal working hours after benefiting from the short labour pay or cash support system.

The measures regarding the short labour pay and the social security premiums will expire at the end of the year.

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